Academic Culture

Town Hall Meeting

Since I work with 3 large cohorts of 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students (100+ students in each cohort) my colleagues and I developed a Town Hall Meeting for the beginning of the year to explain our Rules, Routines, Procedures, and Consequences to the entire cohort at once. Having all of my students on the same system has provided tremendous consistency and stability and created a solid community foundation. Town Hall Meeting is a place where students not only hear the expectations but are encouraged to ask questions or make comments to the entire community. Delivering this presentation once to the entire cohort helps to set the culture in an efficient way. 

Strategy Resources (3)
Teacher In Action
 
 
Lesson Plan
 
 
This is the Town Hall presentation that my colleagues and I use to lay the foundation of who we are as a learning community, what we believe in, and how we want our class and school to operate so that students have the best learning experience. This presentation is a collaboration of many colleagues and has been tweaked and improved many times over the course of several years.
Lesson Plan
 
 
This lesson plan guides my presentation of this Town Hall Meeting.
Teacher In Action
 
 
Lesson Plan
 
 
This is the Town Hall presentation that my colleagues and I use to lay the foundation of who we are as a learning community, what we believe in, and how we want our class and school to operate so that students have the best learning experience. This presentation is a collaboration of many colleagues and has been tweaked and improved many times over the course of several years.
Lesson Plan
 
 
This lesson plan guides my presentation of this Town Hall Meeting.
Aaron Kaswell
Middle School 88 Peter Rouget
Brooklyn, NY


 

About this strategy

Prep Time:
Long
Subject:
Math
Grade:
Seventh grade
Similar Strategies
Routines and Procedures
Hand Signals

My colleagues and I use a variety of hand signals in our classroom to avoid unnecessary disruptions and maintain focus and time on task. Three common hand signals: a signal to use bathroom; a signal for needing scrap paper; and a signal for asking a presenter to speak louder. We introduce all of the hand signals to students at the beginning of the year in a community-wide Town Hall Meeting.

 
Blended Learning Model Overviews
School of One Mastery-Based Model

In 2011, my school was awarded a grant that brought the School of One mastery-based blended learning model to MS88.  School of One allows students to learn at their own pace in a totally redesigned, open classroom that can fit well over 100 students in different centers of the room.   Students are assessed at the beginning of the year and given a “learning trajectory” for the entire year.  Every day, each student is assigned new individualized lessons in different parts of the classroom in one of seven different learning modalities: virtual instruction/reinforcement, independent practice, small group/peer-to-peer collaboration, live investigation, and task projects.  At the end of each class, we use an “exit slip” to evaluate and regroup students based on their progress. They are required to demonstrate mastery in each skill or concept before they can move onto new skills and concepts.


Number of Students: ~300 students

Number of Adults: six teachers; one Operations Technology Associate; SPED teacher(s) and/or paraprofessionals (as needed)

Length of Class Period/Learning Time: 92 minutes (divided into two 36 minute sessions)

Digital Content/Ed Tech Tools Used on a Regular Basis: proprietary web-based software;  IXL, LearnZillion, VirtualNerd, Khan Academy, MangaHigh, Math XL, TenMarks, I Can Learn,  Khan Academy, Engrade, Educreations, Padlet, Remind, Weebly, Google Apps for Education

Hardware Used on a Regular Basis: student laptops (1:1), iPads for teachers, SMARTboards

Key Features: competency-based; student agency;individualized learning paths; project-based; innovative use of time; innovative use of talent; co-teaching


 
Stakeholder Collaboration
Aaron's Approach to Collaboration & Communication

Communicating and collaborating with both colleagues and students' families is crucial in a blended environment. This is especially true if a teacher is doing something that looks very different from other teachers at his school. Check out how Aaron communicates and collaborates with both his colleagues at school and his students' families and how his methods of communication and collaboration have evolved over time.

 
 
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